5 George Street Luton
George Street in 1901 - to see a larger version, please click on the image
The Rating and Valuation Act 1925 specified that every piece of land and building in the country was to be assessed to determine its rateable value. Most of Bedfordshire was valued in 1927. Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service is lucky in having the valuer's notebook covering most of George Street. Evidence in the book shows that the survey of George Street took place in 1928.
5 George Street was, in 1928, owned and occupied by Duberly and White, chemists and druggists, who also had shops at 89 Park Street, 215 Dunstable Road, 40 New Bedford Road and 21 Cheapside [DV1/R7/30]. The valuer commented: "Been a chemist for 100 years". George Smith Duberly is first mentioned in a directory of 1877, as "pharmaceutical and dispending chemist", the business became Duberly and White at some time between 1898 and 1903. Walter White also owned 3 George Street, next door and from at least 1920 until at least 1936 he served as secretary to Luton Burial Ground at Crawley Green Road. Duberly and White are last listed at 5 George Street in a directory of 1950, by 1960 the occupiers are Halifax Building Society, which also occupied 3 George Street and are listed at this address in the last Kelly's Directory for Luton in 1975. General Accident Fire and Life Assurance Corporation occupied 3 and 5 George Street from at least 1931 until at least 1975, as did Cann, Polus and Company, certified accountants, in 1960 and Muscatt, Nelson and Company from at least 1965 until at least 1975.
In the 1928 valuation survey the premises included a cellar measuring 10 feet square. The building had a frontage of 20 feet and contained two rooms used as a shop measuring 17 feet by 13 feet 6 inches and 13 feet 6 inches by 11 feet. A brick and slated shed stood in the yard.
The first floor comprised four store rooms measuring: 13 feet by 12 feet; 16 feet 6 inches by 11 feet 6 inches; 12 feet by 9 feet 6 inches and 10 feet 6 inches by 9 feet 6 inches. Attics lay above these but were "of little value as a store".
3 to 5 George Street June 2010